Baldor Electric Company (www.baldor.com) unveiled the next-generation of smart drives that offers space-saving and economic solutions for common single-axis automation requirements. Also, the drives feature an Ethernet interface compatible including an Ethernet-compatible motion control standard, Powerlink.
Mint Lite, the latest programming capability, is being fitted without a charge on all of MotiFlex e100 and MicroFlex e100 three- and single- phase drive ranges. The drives are available in a wide choice of power ratings of up to 33.5 A. These versatile drives may be utilized to control in V/Hz control modes, linear and rotary servo motors, closed-loop vector motors, and linear motors.
The integrated Mint Lite capability supports a wide range of motion programming requirements such as performing absolute and relative moves, reacting to real-time trigger events, registration moves, changing target positions on the fly, homing and jog movements, and S-ramp profiles. Its programming facility permits standalone drives to give solutions for many common machinery and automation tasks, like simple place and pick motion, indexing axes, feeding or cutting to length, and machine adjustments like changing backstops or guides to reconfigure the machine for new batches. These capabilities are generally required in a large number of processing and manufacturing sectors such as wood/metalworking, printing, electronic and electrical equipment, pharmaceutical, packaging, and food and beverage.
More flexible programmable logic controller (“PLC”) interfacing is also a notable application for these new drives. Every drive producer provides a “drive profile” utility or a defined process data exchange interface with PLCs. The ability to program the new smart Ethernet drives from Baldor Electric means that the standard drive profile might be adapted, maybe to optimize the drive for a specific application or to simplify the communication process. Also, the drive’s TCP/IP-compatible Ethernet interface makes it easy to link into the Ethernet factory networks for reporting production metrics, changing product recipes, etc.
All of Baldor Electric’s MotiFlex e100 and MicroFlex e100 drives come with a built-in I/O as standard, with fast-latch inputs for registration applications, as well as a CANopen manager capability for HMI interfacing and I/O expansion. The MotiFlex e100 drives have card slots for further fieldbus connectivity and local I/O expansion. The fieldbus modules extend its connectivity options to external PLCs, to support interfaces including DeviceNet, Profibus, Profinet-IO and Ethernet/IP. This configuration versatility permits the drives to be configured cost effectively, which will provide single-box solutions for automation applications.
The local intelligence brings new, versatile system building capabilities if used in Powerlink system. Critical events can be solved directly, to eliminate the impact of controller and network scan time latencies. The quicker response of critical axes is translated directly to higher throughput. Another key difference a smart drive offers is that by using local intelligence to offload the centralized Powerlink network controller. For users configuring systems, including large numbers of motion axes, this is very cost effective as Baldor Electric fits Mint Lite programming capabilities as standard.
Configuration and Development for the drives are included in Baldor Electric’s Mint WorkBench, a development environment, which is provided without charge to machine users.
The latest smart drives complement existing Powerlink network control possibilities from Baldor Electric: a common central controller available for a variety of motion axes, NextMove e100, and a plug-in controller for drives, Mint Machine Module, which can control either five or two axes. Its plug-in control card gives access to Mint language’s full capabilities, and it is capable of being programmed to perform sophisticated motion functions like cams and gearing.